How I Kept My Sanity During My Last Pregnancy

Pregnancy – for some it’s such a breeze while it drives others insane. Hormones are to blame, I tell yah. One minute you’re a peace-loving puppy-hugging hippie, and the next thing you know you’re channeling Linda Blair’s character in The Exorcist. You might be here because you’re a soon-to-be mom (congratulations!) looking for helpful tips. If you are, I hope you find my experience useful and informative. But if you’re already a mom, join me as I recall my hormone crazy preggy days and how I kept my sanity, I’m sure you’ll be able to relate in one way or another.

Remember this movie? Two characters with completely opposite pregnancies! Image from Google
1. I gave in to my cravings. Seriously, ladies. If you don’t then you’re gonna have a bad time. You’ll get cranky – extremely cranky – and it’s going to ruin your day. Some women have the most outrageous cravings though, take my mother for instance. When she was pregnant with me, she craved for apples. Not just any ordinary apple, though. She craved for apples that we’re almost rotten. So whenever she’d tell others about it, she’d say, “Pinaglihi ko siya na bulok na mansanas!”. Bizarre, right?! My cravings with Ethan were reasonable though – pancakes. I was lucky because my office back then was surrounded by fast food stores that sold pancakes for breakfast, and I always ordered some before coming in to work. It may be difficult at first, but food cravings normally end during the 2nd trimester. Hang in there!

My favorite fast food pancakes!

 

2. I always carried snacks with me. This is a must. You have to realize that you’re eating for two and your body will increase it’s demand for food, which means more frequent hunger pangs. When I was pregnant with Ethan, I swear my stomach was like a bottomless pit. No cracker could keep it from rumbling. I remember coming across a tip about eating small frequent meals, so I decided to try it and it worked well for me. Keep your snacks as healthy as possible and choose those that are more filling. I loved snacking on wheat bread sandwiches, Century Tuna Lite and hard boiled eggs, trail mix and apples. Always bring snacks with you whenever you go out, you’ll never know when you might need to munch on something.

image from Google
3. I drank a lot of water. I was always thirsty especially in my third trimester,  so thirsty that I could finish a liter of water in one go. Water also helped me with hunger pangs, kept me refreshed and made me feel energized. Having a small water bottle in your everyday bag is an idea you might want to consider, that way you can take a sip anytime, anywhere.

image from Google
4. I warned people about my mood swings. I set expectations with people around me by explaining how I sometimes preferred to be alone, especially when my “suplada” side was rearing it’s ugly head. This way people will know what to expect and will understand how to deal with you on bad days.
5. I always had a Chinese menthol stick in my bag. They may not be for everyone, but these little white sticks work wonders for headaches and dizziness. I frequently used them during my 1st trimester, not only because of constant dizziness, but because I had a very sensitive sense of smell then. There were places wherein I felt like throwing up just because of the smell, back then I especially hated the smell of deep fried food.

image from Google

 

6. I also kept a handful of candies. I needed these for when I’d throw up due to morning sickness. Only after my pregnancy did I come across tips suggesting ginger as an effective remedy. Try ginger candies and ginger ale!7. I gave our dog Chicken hugs.

 

8. I watched my weight. I kept tabs on my weight during every doctor’s appointment and made sure I was gaining at a normal pace. My OB said I should only gain about 20 lbs, but I ended up gaining 30 lbs. Ten pounds is a big difference but my doctor said it was just fine. I was totally fine with it too because, compared to my 1st pregnancy, I gained 50 lbs. So how did watching my weight keep me sane? During pregnancy, a lot of women are easily alarmed by weight gain. I myself have self-esteem issues because of my weight, even now. When I was pregnant though I realized that I had to make a conscious effort to make sure my weight gain did not go out of control. Keeping track of my weight gain gave me the control I needed, it helped me understand that being pregnant is not an excuse to eat anything and everything to your heart’s (and stomach’s) content. I gave in to my cravings, but still ate everything else in moderation. Because of my efforts, I didn’t blow up so easily like I did with my first pregnancy, and I worried less about becoming ginormous again. No “OMG I’ve become so fat” moments to bring me down! Downloading a pregnancy app on my phone helped me a lot with monitoring my weight. You might want to check out these Google Play Pregnancy Apps if you’re using an Android phone.
image from Google Play
9. I ditched random loose clothing for proper maternity wear. During my first pregnancy, I always wore cheap dreadful denim colored leggings that were trying to pass themselves off as jeans, loose cardigans and P99 tops that looked liked drapes. You can imagine how awful I looked, I always had my head down because I was ashamed of how silly my ensemble was. I was like “It’s okay as long as my tummy fits and my arms don’t show” (I have huge arms. LOL). You couldn’t blame me though, because I wanted to save as much as I could for the baby back then. When I was pregnant with Ethan though, I realized that I should still be able to enjoy wearing nice clothes even with my growing tummy. I was lucky enough to have an awesome friend who lent me some of her old maternity wear, and I also invested in a few pieces for myself. I’m glad I did, because was finally able to say goodbye to my frumpy outfits and I ended up feeling confident about myself. I guess the key to get more bang for your buck is to buy something that you can still use after giving birth, like a nice classy blouse or dress. Take a look at this cute top from Buntis at Zalora!
If you still want to wear jeans but can’t afford to buy a new pair, you can try what I did – go DIY! Pinterest has amazing tutorials for DIY maternity jeans. If you have a pair you’re willing to sacrifice, go ahead and try it out. I tried doing the one with an elastic band in the front, and another with the band on the sides. The one on the sides worked best for me. Seriously, you can’t wear leggings for nine months.
10. I cried when I had to. There were times went I felt sad for no reason during my pregnancy, and there were also instances when I would get extremely upset over little things. They tell you not to cry because it will affect the baby’s well-being, but I think that bottling up such feelings can lead to more stress. I’d cry alone, let it all out and just be done with it. I’d always feel a lot better after.
11. I followed a TV series. It helped keep my mind off stressful things – a distraction. Whenever I’d feel overwhelmed by my pregnancy and my husband wasn’t around to talk about it, I’d load my favorite series on the computer and watch til I was tired.

image from Google

12. I made time for friends and family. I even commuted to Bulacan for a swimming trip with my in-laws while I was eight months pregnant! Chatting and catching up with people you love will never fail to make you feel awesome.

13. I spent quality time with my husband. We always went out on dates – we love movies and trying out restaurants. Just being with him, knowing he was there for me, kept me sane on most days.

14. I prayed. Prayers always got me through the worst days. It never mattered if my prayers were short or long, as long as I spent a few minutes to thank Him for the little miracle he blessed me with. I always asked Him for guidance, for patience and for a happy and healthy pregnancy.

How about you, mommies? How did you get through all the crazy during your pregnancy?
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Maternity Philhealth Requirements

I initially planned posting about the maternity Philhealth requirements when I gave birth, however, due to my full time job and schedule I had almost forgotten about this blog. I apologize to those who inquired and never got a response.
I’ll keep it sweet and short as there is not much to discuss. Please note that Philhealth deductions will be separate for you and your baby. Mine was automatically deducted from the bill, however, my son’s was supposed to be reimbursed after securing additional documents. Unfortunately, I was not able to take care of his Philhealth reimbursement as I had no time to do so.
To inquire about the Philhealth requirements, I called Makati Medical Center (this is where I gave birth. You may refer to my previous post about my birthing experiencefor more information) and I think I was transferred to the hospital “Delivery Room” and one of their staff discussed the requirements with me. You can reach Makati Medical Center at 888 8999.
Here is the list of requirements. I am not sure if this is standard across all hospitals, but you can always call them to check.
Two copies of the CF1 Form – To be accomplished by you and signed by your employer, one form for yourself, the other for your baby. I had mine accomplished prior to being admitted at the hospital.
Photocopy of Philhealth ID – I brought the original one and a copy, just in case
Updated MDR (Member Data Record) – You can either request one from your HR department or from your nearest Philhealth office
Two copies of the CF2 Form – This needs to be accomplished by your OB and requires your signature at the back. After giving birth I handed these to one of the nurses and requested to have them filled out and signed before being billed.
Certificate of Philhealth Contributions– You can request for this document from your HR department. I asked for two copies.
Marriage Contract
I remember that they did not ask me for all of these documents when I was at the hospital, but then again it’s better to be sure and ready. If you would like to double check the list of requirements you can always call Makati Medical Center at the number provided earlier.
As for baby’s reimbursement, you can refer to this list provided to me by the Philhealth officer at Makati Med. I won’t be able discuss this in detail though since I was not able to accomplish this after giving birth.
Please keep in mind that it is a whole lot easier to have the deductions processed before leaving the hospital. If you are unable to secure the documents before or while you’re admitted, the deductions can always be reimbursed but remember that you have to process it within 60 days upon discharge otherwise it will no longer be honored by Philhealth.

I hope you moms find this post useful!

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